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In 2016, the Chicago Cubs had one of the best rotations in the league (if not the best). They had a team era of 3.15 led by Kyle Hendricks with his 2.13 era and Jon Lester with his 2.44. There is no denying it, the Cubs pitching last year was dominate and helped lead them to a world series ring.
Look at the images above (top=2016 and bottom=2017). You should be able to easily see that each one of their era’s are much worse. Not to mention, the fifth starter in 2017 hasn’t been very good either, whether that is Brett Anderson or Eddie Butler, both haven’t been very good.
A bright spot could be that the Cubs bullpen has been amazing led by Wade Davis and Carl Edwards.
While most could have predicted regression from this staff, not like this though.
Hendrick’s has almost doubled his era this season after putting up a 2.13 in 2016 only to have a 4.09 as of date.
After his amazing 2015 season in which he put up a 1.77 era and won Cy-Young. He had a solid 2016 season posting a 3.10 era with a 18-8 record. In 2017, Jake Arrieta really hasn’t looked like Jake Arrieta and more like an average pitcher. He has a 4.46 coming in to his start today in 12 starts, not very good.
Lackey has been quite bad this year. While he is 38 years old now, no one expected a 5+ era out of the veteran. Ever since 2013 Lackey has been really solid but this year, that would not apply in 2017.
Hopefully, this rotation filled with top tier pitchers can turn things around and help carry the Cubs to another playoff run. But in order to do so, they need to play better.
Be on the lookout for these Cubs pitchers to start playing better, because they truly are better than how they are playing.